Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird, Jean-François Lisée, Quebec’s Minister of International Relations, La Francophonie and External Trade (and Minister Responsible for the Montréal Region), Montréal Mayor Michael Applebaum, and ICAO Secretary General Raymond Benjamin celebrated the signing of a new agreement to keep the headquarters of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) in Montréal. The Agreement sets out the terms between ICAO and Canada that will keep ICAO headquartered in Montréal for 20 years beyond 2016 (the year the current agreement expires). Montréal has been home to the ICAO since its inception in 1947. The Government of Canada takes its host country responsibilities seriously and is actively involved at ICAO to make sure Canada’s aviation interests and positions are represented on the international stage. All three governments have listened carefully to ICAO’s membership about their needs and about how, as hosts, we can best support the effectiveness of this organization. To that end, Canada is contributing $1.4 million to modernize ICAO conference facilities and to purchase additional security equipment ahead of this fall’s Assembly. The Government of Quebec, in addition to its 1994 agreement on the benefits and courtesy privileges to be extended to the Organization as long as it stays in Montréal, has also agreed to assume, until 2026, the administrative costs of the IACO premises devoted to the technical cooperation—a $15-million investment.
IAOPA Position on RPA’s Published
IAOPA’s representative to ICAO, Frank Hofmann, has been successful in getting IAOPA’s position on remotely piloted aircraft (RPA) published in the latest edition of the Remotely Piloted Systems Yearbook. IAOPA continues to work at ICAO to ensure that safety is not compromised and airspace restrictions are not imposed as RPA’s become more popular throughout the globe. In his article he stresses that “General Aviation operators continue to insist on a fixed set of performance criteria: the introduction of RPA cannot reduce the existing level of safety; new equipage requirements for GA operators which would permit simultaneous RPA operations are impractical and unacceptable; existing Class E and G airspace must not be restricted due to RPA operations.” To read the entire article, check out the latest RPAS guide at http://goo.gl/u6Qax
IAOPA Secretary General Attends AOPA-Australia Safety Seminar
IAOPA Secretary General Craig Spence attended the AOPA Australian Safety Seminar held at Bankstown Airport on the outskirts of Sydney and witnessed first-hand the challenges and victories that general aviation and AOPA-Australia face. The safety seminar was part of a series of meetings held throughout the country bringing key representatives from government and industry together with members to discuss general aviation safety. Speakers were featured from the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA), Airservices Australia (the air navigation service provider), and the Australian Transport Safety Bureau. Attendance at the two day event was high indicating a strong interest in supporting GA and AOPA. Activity at Bankstown was heavy given the beautiful weather, but sadly many of the pilots relayed that the current activity at the airport is only a shadow of what it used to be. While in Australia, IAOPA also participated in a series of meetings along with AOPA-Australia President Andrew Anderson, and Past President Phillip Reiss in the capital city of Canberra and explained the resources that were available through IAOPA and AOPA-Australia to improve aviation safety.
AOPA-Finland Continues to Battle Excessive Charges
AOPA-Finland continues to battle increases in costs associated with air navigation and airport services. Finavia, the government owned air navigation and airport operator, published a new price list valid from the 1st of July. For private pilots and aircraft owners the charges remain relatively the same as earlier, however, a new commercial GA aerial work customer segment has been introduced. The pricing for this new group is 25% higher than for private pilots. Finavia's explanation is simple, their operation costs are higher than their revenues and some new actions are needed to close the gap. AOPA-Finland will continue to work towards reducing these charges while at the same time battling to save Helsinki-Malmi Airport from closing. To show your support for GA in Finland go online and sign the petition opposing the closure of the airport at http://www.pelastamalmi.org/en/petition/sign.html.
FAA Issues Policy Guidance on Requirement for BFR
The FAA’s Office of the Chief Counsel has released a letter of interpretation in reference to whether a pilot flying on a 61.75 license requires needs to comply with FAR 61.56 requirements for a flight review. The answer is yes, but then the letter goes on to clarify that a “holder of a U.S. private pilot certificate that is based on a foreign pilot license as contemplated by § 61.75 would also have to meet the requirements of §61.56(c). In other words, a person exercising the privileges of a U.S. private pilot certificate that is based on a foreign pilot certificate and satisfies § 61.75 is required to comply with §61.56(c) before acting as pilot-in-command of a U.S.-registered aircraft. A person is only excepted from the § 61.56(c) requirements if the person has (1) within the period specified in paragraph (c) of § 61.56, passed a pilot proficiency check conducted by an examiner, an approved pilot check airman, or a U.S. Armed Force, for a pilot certificate, rating, or operating privilege; (2) within the period specified in paragraph (c) of § 61.56, satisfactorily accomplished one or more phases of an FAA-sponsored pilot proficiency award program; or (3) if the person is a student pilot undergoing training for a certificate and has a current solo flight endorsement as required under § 61.87”. For a copy of the letter go here.
AOPA-China Working to Allow Experimental Aircraft in China
With the advancement of China's low-altitude airspace management reform and the improvement of the civil aviation laws and regulations, general aviation has a good opportunity for development within China. One area that has not been addressed in past discussion is the experimental section, and according to AOPA-China, the experimental aircraft will play a key role in the aviation sector. Experimental aircraft in China have never been recognized by any Chinese authority, and currently cannot legally be flown in Chinese airspace. According to AOPA-China, “If the public does not change the understanding and perceptions for experimental aircraft, it will continue to survive in the dark, which will be a tremendous regret in the process of the development of Chinese general aviation.” AOPA-China is planning on exploring what is needed to foster the development of experimental aircraft in China in 2013, and will be working with the Civil Aviation Authority of China to prepare the management practices for the experimental aircraft. When completed, the recommendations will be given to the relevant authorities as soon as possible so that they can build the rules and regulations to accelerate the development of the experimental aircraft.
AOPA Safety Institute revives “Storm Week” June 9-16
No matter where in the world you fly, this fact remains: Airplanes and thunderstorms don’t mix. That’s why you’ll want to participate in the Air Safety Institute’s “Storm Week” held from June 9 through June 16 (http://www.aopa.org/Pilot-Resources/Safety-and-Technique/Weather/Storm-Week.aspx.) Each day ASI spotlights thunderstorm awareness to help you understand weather situations fueling these storms and to improve your ability to stay clear from blinding downpours, damaging hail, and airframe-shattering turbulence that can bring down your airplane without further notice. Use ASI’s free resources and join AOPA Foundation President Bruce Landsberg during ASI’s live webinar “Thunderstorm Avoidance: ATC, Datalink, and You,” on Thursday, June 13 at 8 p.m.US East coast time, to learn how you can mitigate risks and use good judgment when it comes to weather-related go/no-go decisions. Then apply what you learn from “Storm Week,” heed adverse weather warnings, and always have a plan B and stick to it! Register for the free webinar now. http://www.aopa.org/Pilot-Resources/Safety-and-Technique/Weather/Storm-Week.aspx
Pass this Newsletter on to Your Members
Nothing can keep existing members, and attract new members like reminding them of the great work that AOPA Affiliates, and IAOPA, are doing on national, regional, and international levels to keep them flying. Great work is being done in all parts of the globe to advance the interests of general aviation and the best way to share the message is to make sure that this newsletter gets to as many members and non-members alike. So I encourage you to publish this on your website, send on via email to your members, and do what you can to help spread the word.
The International Council of Aircraft Owner and Pilot Associations represent the interests of more than 450,000 pilots and aircraft owners in 70 countries. Formed in 1962, IAOPA is dedicated to promoting the peaceful uses of general aviation and aerial work worldwide.
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